David Lee Roth says Eddie Van Halen is “not doing well”

David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen onstage together in 2015
David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen onstage together in 2015 (Image credit: Daniel Knighton - Getty)

David Lee Roth (opens in new tab) says that Eddie Van Halen is “not doing well.”

The vocalist was in conversation with the Las Vegas Review-Journal (opens in new tab) about his residency in the city (opens in new tab), when he spoke about his decision to take on the run of shows with Van Halen (opens in new tab)’s future up in the air.

Roth says: “Ed’s not doing well, and singing and dancing is a perishable skill. If you have the capacity, it’s something that has to be used routinely, if not for the thrill of it and the magic of creating with other incandescent spirits.”

Roth’s comment comes after much speculation in recent months about Eddie Van Halen’s health, with some online reports suggesting he’s been undergoing treatment for throat cancer, although there’s been no official news from the guitarist’s camp.

In September last year, Roth caused a stir when he said he thought Van Halen was “finished” with the vocalist adding: “Van Halen isn’t going to be coming back in the fashion that you know. That being said, Eddie Van Halen’s got his own story to tell – it’s not mine to tell.”

In October, Eddie and his son Wolfgang attended Tool’s show at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. 

There was a light-hearted moment when one fan approached the musician at the venue, not to request an autograph, but to ask Eddie to take a picture of him with the stage in the background – with the guy completely oblivious that he was talking to one of the most famous guitarists in the world.

Van Halen: The Japanese Singles 1978-1984 (opens in new tab)

Van Halen: The Japanese Singles 1978-1984 (opens in new tab)
This 13-disc collection of singles that were originally released for the Japanese market recently launched around the world, featuring classics including Jump and Panama.

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. After initially joining our news desk in the summer of 2014, he moved to the e-commerce team full-time in 2020. He maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott grew up listening to rock and prog, cutting his teeth on bands such as Marillion and Magnum before his focus shifted to alternative and post-punk in the late 80s. His favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Ned's Atomic Dustbin and Drab Majesty, but he also still has a deep love of Rush.